Tributes pour in for Kobe Bryant and Gianna after tragic deaths in helicopter crash

Tributes pour in for Kobe Bryant and Gianna after tragic deaths in helicopter crash

Tributes have been pouring in after the tragic deaths of basketball legend Kobe Bryant and his 13-year-old daughter Gianna in a helicopter crash.

They lost their lives yesterday in a crash that killed seven other people in Calabasas, California. There were no survivors.

Now, people are paying tribute to the 41-year-old basketball star who enjoyed a 20-year career with the LA Lakers until his retirement in 2016. He was a five-time NBA champion and an NBA All-Star 18 times.

Watch the full news report on Kobe and Gianna's deaths below: 

As per the BBC, NBA commissioner Adam Silver issued the following statement about the 41-year-old's death: "The NBA family is devastated by the tragic passing of Kobe Bryant and his daughter, Gianna.

"For 20 seasons, Kobe showed us what is possible when remarkable talent blends with an absolute devotion to winning. He was one of the most extraordinary players in the history of our game with accomplishments that are legendary.

"But he will be remembered most for inspiring people around the world to pick up a basketball and compete to the very best of their ability.

"He was generous with the wisdom he acquired and saw it as his mission to share it with future generations of players, taking special delight in passing down his love of the game to Gianna."

Dwyane Wade took to Twitter, writing "Heroes come and go LEGENDS live forever #8 #24"

Meanwhile, former US President Barack Obama wrote on Twitter: "Kobe was a legend on the court and just getting started in what would have been just as meaningful a second act. To lose Gianna is even more heartbreaking to us as parents. Michelle and I send love and prayers to Vanessa and the entire Bryant family on an unthinkable day."

The current president, Donald Trump, also paid tribute to the former basketball player on the social media website, writing: "Kobe Bryant, despite being one of the truly great basketball players of all time, was just getting started in life. He loved his family so much, and had such strong passion for the future. The loss of his beautiful daughter, Gianna, makes this moment even more devastating...."

As per CNBC, six-time NBA champion Michael Jordan said: "I loved Kobe - he was like a little brother to me. We used to talk often, and I will miss those conversations very much.

"He was a fierce competitor, one of the greats of the game and a creative force. Kobe was also an amazing dad who loved his family deeply - and took great pride in his daughter's love for the game of basketball."

Kobe's last tweet was on the day of his death. In it, he congratulated LeBron James for beating him on the NBA's career scoring list.